The Interpreter - University Libraries

The US Navy Japanese/Oriental Language School Archival Project
The Interpreter
Number 64A
Archives, University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries
òRemember September 11, 2001ò
Our Mission
In the Spring of 2000, the
Archives continued the original efforts of Captain Roger
Pineau and William Hudson,
and the Archives first attempts in 1992, to gather the
papers, letters, photographs,
and records of graduates of
the US Navy Japanese/
Oriental Language School,
University of Colorado at
Boulder, 1942-1946. We
assemble these papers in
recognition of the contributions made by JLS/OLS
instructors and graduates to
the War effort in the Pacific
and the Cold War, to the
creation of East Asian
language programs across
the country, and to the
development of JapaneseAmerican cultural reconciliation programs after
World War II.
Samoa Language
[Ed. Note: Harry D. Pratt and Elmer
J. Stone adapted the following from
the article, “Parley-Voo Japanese”,
published in the Marine Corps
The Leatherneck,
December 1942. Quoted material is
from the article.]
Among the national concerns
generated by the December 7,
1941 attack on Pearl Harbor was
the woeful dearth of Japanese
language speakers in our military
forces. As previously chronicled
in the Interpreter the Navy had
anticipated this need by training
a few Naval and Marine officers
in Japan from 1920 to 1940.
With the commencement of
hostilities the need for an
immediate expansion of
language education programs
became apparent. Concurrently,
Japan’s lightning conquest of
vast areas of the Western Pacific
alarmed American planners who
moved quickly to protect the
vital lifeline to New Zealand and
Australia. Key to this objective
was fortifying American Samoa
and this fell to the 2nd Marine
Brigade that on January 7, 1942
boarded hastily converted luxury
passenger ships, the Lurline,
Monterey and Matsonia, for the
13-day voyage from San Diego
to Pago Pago.
Enroute to Samoa M a j o r
Ferdinand Bishop, a Brigade
intelligence officer and a
graduate of the Tokyo program,
finalized plans to open and teach
a Japanese language course for
Marines garrisoned on the island.
The method of instruction was to
follow that employed in the
Tokyo Embassy program that
had as its foundation the
Naganuma Hyojun Tokuhon, the
same as used in the JLS. The
curriculum formulated by Bishop
included Naganuma Book One,
introduction to gyosho a n d
sosho, military vocabulary,
Japanese personal and place
names, Japanese, Pacific and
East Asia geography, Japanese
military history and customs and
military interrogation. Prior to
the war several JapaneseEnglish and English-Japanese
dictionaries had been reproduced
in the United States. Included
Kenkyusha’s Waei,
Sanseido Eiwa, Rose-Innes Kanji
Jiten and others. Ultimately
each student received a personal
copy of these volumes and after
protectively carried into combat,
over reefs, through salt water,
jungles and wherever else their
Upon arrival in Samoa Bishop
located, in his words, “a tinroofed shanty under the palms”
to serve as a hall of learning and
a nearby “native thatch hut” to
serve as a dormitory for the
enlisted students. A Brigade
memorandum to all units
announced the formation of the
school and solicited applications
for admission to the six months
of instruction. Major Bishop
screened the applications,
selected a number for in-depth
interviews and in the end three
officers and 13 enlisted men
were enrolled and classes
Within a few
weeks, owing to ineptitude, a
transfer and an illness, the
number was reduced to one
officer and seven enlisted men.
An accomplished scholar Bishop
also proved to be an effective
teacher and taskmaster. Except
for the necessities of life and
Sunday mornings, the students’
waking hours were reserved for
lectures, study and occasional
mandatory guard duty. Being in
a war zone the “tin-roofed
shanty” was equipped with
blackout curtains to permit the
required nighttime study.
“The first week of the course
opened with lectures on
background of the Japanese,
leading up to a study of the
characteristics, psychology, and
problems of the various strata of
Japanese society.
language study began with
pronunciation drill, conversation
practice, study of Hiragana
syllabary (sic) and the learning
of 15 k a n a , or composite
symbols, each day.” Over the
following 23 weeks the class
mastered Naganuma Book One
and learned to read and write the
500 kanji and compounds in that
volume. Distinguishing features
of the curriculum were the
emphasis on Japanese order of
battle, military terms and
customs, historical background,
relevant geography and
interrogation techniques.
All eight of the graduates went
on to language work with Marine
combat units in the Guadalcanal
and subsequent campaigns. Of
June 15, 2003
the seven enlisted men five were
ultimately elevated to officer
rank. Five of the graduates (Col.
Harry D. Pratt, Lt. Colonel
William R. Croyle, Maj. Ralph
A. Baker, Maj. Elmer J. Stone
and Lt. Seldon L. Brown) went
on to the JLS for advanced
training preparatory to the
planned invasion of Japan.
Later JLS Classes MIA
My class is conspicuously
absent. I will give you a few
names but 1945 (when I was at
Boulder) is a long time ago and
my memory is not very good
anymore. Plus, I have not kept
up with any of my classmates. I
lived in the fraternity house
across from the stadium. I have
some pictures but I don’t know
where they are. They were taken
from our dorm when there was
nothing between us and the
Leonard Rush
OLS 1946
Marion Levy Jr., JLS 1943,
Dies at 83
Marion J. Levy Jr., a scholar of
sociology and international
affairs who wrote about
modernization theory, died on
May 26 in Princeton, N.J., where
he lived. He was 83.
The cause was complications
from Parkinson's disease,
Dr. Levy retired in 1989 as
Sociology and International
Affairs at Princeton. He had
taught there since 1947 and was
chairman of its department of
East Asian studies for a time.
He once said that "the
fundamental problem posed by
modernization is whether human
animals can adjust as readily to
longevity, affluence, and peace
as they have in the past to
shortgevity, poverty, and war."
He predicted that life in a
modernized world "is likely to
become crowded, affluent, nasty,
brutish and long."
His writings include the book
"Modernization: Latecomers and
Survivors" (1972), and the twovolume work "Modernization
and the Structure of Societies"
(1966), which examined the
differences between societies
nonmodernized and those that
were relatively modernized. He
scholarship about why Japan, not
China, was in the vanguard of
concluding that while many
assumed the two countries were
similar when they were first
opened to Western influence, in
reality the similarities were only
Marion Joseph Levy was born
and raised in Galveston, Texas.
He transferred from Berkley to
Boulder in 1942. He was a Navy
lieutenant in Asia in World War
II and received a doctorate in
sociology from Harvard.
He is survived by his wife,
Joy; a daughter, Dore J. Levy of
Providence, R.I., who is a
professor of comparative
literature and East Asian studies
Mike Foley
by Mike’s facile command of
Japanese and once again by his
easy friendliness.
We resumed contact some
years ago, and he and Inez were
good enough to pay us a visit in
Redding on one of their trips to
the West Coast. We also got
together at the last two JLS
He was a very special person,
and Muriel and I were deeply
saddened by his unexpected
I met Mike at the University of
Washington when I was
beginning my graduate work
there in the fall of 1940. We
were both from Montana and
formed a pleasant friendship.
Four years later, in May 1944,
I was part of the group recently
graduated from the JLS which
reported for duty at JICPOA,
Pearl Harbor. Mike was in
charge of the weather section of
department and kindly arranged
for me to become a member. It
was exactly the right kind of
assignment for me, and I enjoyed
the work and our small,
congenial team. I was impressed
Al Weissberg
JLS 1944
[Ed Note: Please feel free to send in
any Mike Foley stories and Harry
Muheim stories that you can
remember. We will be honored to
print them up in the newsletter.]
at Brown; two sons, Noah, of
Atlanta, and Amos, of
Manhattan; five grandchildren;
and a sister, Ruth Levy Kempner
of Galveston.
June 17, 2002
Mostly By Eric Pace
The New York Times
[Ed. Note: Elizabeth Campbell is to
be credited for figuring out how to
scan and include images in the
formerly imageless Interpreter. I
hope you find the images an
attractive addition to the newsletter.
Maxine Good Pineau
Business Woman & Volunteer
Maxine Good Pineau, 82, a
businesswoman, died of
pulmonary fibrosis April 21 at
her home in Bethesda, MD.
Mrs. Pineau was born in Flint,
MI. She moved to the
Washington area in 1943.
For 15 years in the 1960s and
1970s, Mrs. Pineau was
executive secretary of the
Washington Ethical Society. She
left that position in 1977 after
she and two daughters purchased
Needlework Attic, a Bethesda
knitting and needlepoint shop.
They managed that operation for
15 years.
Mrs. Pineau was a 50-year
David Hays, Archivist II,
University of Colorado at Boulder
Campus Box 184
Boulder, Colorado, 80309-0184
Phone (303) 492-7242
Fax (303) 492-3960
New JLS Website:
member of Cedar Lane Unitarian
Church in Bethesda, where she
was a board member and
religious educator. She was a
Red Cross volunteer at National
Naval Medical Center at
Bethesda and at the Children’s
Inn at the National Institutes of
Her husband, retired Navy
CPT Roger Pineau, died in 1993.
Survivors include four
children, Suzanne Pineau of La
Jolla, CA, Julienne Hubbard of
Washington, DC, Anthony
Pineau of Stafford and
Antoinette Pineau of Ojai, CA;
and four grandchildren.
Washington Post
April 26, 2003